Open access

What is open access?

Open access (OA) articles are made available free of charge to the public so there is no need for someone who wants to read an article to buy a journal to read it or to pay a fee to download it from a website.

The advantage of OA is that it allows information to be disseminated online quickly and widely.

If you are undertaking research, the body funding your research may require you to publish the results in an OA format.

Some OA options require authors to pay a fee, sometimes known as an article processing charge.

The reason journals charge this money is to cover the costs of production, such as administration, editing, layout and marketing, that are usually paid for by readers’ subscription fees.

Authors can approach research funders or institutions to pay article processing charges.

There may also be an option for authors to archive a version of their accepted article without charge.

OA articles published by RCNi are subject to the same rigorous acceptance, peer-review and editing processes as our non-OA content. 

The potential for RCNi to charge fees does not influence the decision about whether an article will be published: authors are given the option to pay to have their article published only after the peer-review process is complete and reviewers have recommended the article be accepted.

Further reading


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